Postman delivers track to old Hatfield rail station - 50 years after it closed

PUBLISHED: 11:31 12 June 2019 | UPDATED: 15:57 17 June 2019

Mike Izzard started this project over four years ago. Picture: Mark Lampert

Mike Izzard started this project over four years ago. Picture: Mark Lampert

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New track was laid at the disused Nast Hyde Halt railway station in Hatfield on Sunday, commemorating 50 years since its dismantlement.

The final product. Picture: John SpavinsThe final product. Picture: John Spavins

Hatfield-based postman Mike Izzard planned, organised and layed 30 feet of track on the Albans Way site.

The historic train track, which ran from Hatfield to St Albans city centre, was in operation from 1865 to 1968 and was taken apart in 1969.

Mike began improving Nast Hyde Halt by himself over four years ago, after Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council didn't have the funds to renovate the area.

Mike said: "I just felt annoyed and thought it'd be embarrassing if the Hatfield end of the Alban Way was overgrown and unkept.

The group of volunteers who helped lay the track on Sunday. Picture: Andy StevensThe group of volunteers who helped lay the track on Sunday. Picture: Andy Stevens

"Every day I'd stop on the way home and put in an hour or two tidying it up."

Mike recieved a great deal of support from Nene Valley railway track and bridges manager Dom Osborn - who provided the railway track for free, Hatfield town councillor Lenny Brandon and concrete firm CEMEX, which donated and shovelled six tonnes of railway ballast as well as the volunteers who helped lay the track.

Commenting on the new track, Councillor Brandon said: "Nast Hyde Halt is probably better now than it ever was when it was functional."

Mike was also helped by Andy Stevens, who transported the railway tracks and sleepers from Peterborough to Hatfield in his lorry.

Andy Stevens collected and transported the rails from Peterborough to Hatfield. Picture: Andy StevensAndy Stevens collected and transported the rails from Peterborough to Hatfield. Picture: Andy Stevens

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"I was lucky enough to be nearby one day and brought them back to Hatfield after he asked if anyone with a lorry and crane could help," said Andy.

"A neighbour living close to the Halt was kind enough to let us store them in their front garden for a couple of months!"

Mike is currently finishing off a buffer section that will be fixed at the end of the track by the end of this week.

Mike Izzard in action. Picture: John HawthorneMike Izzard in action. Picture: John Hawthorne

Mike added: "It's been quite emotional to know I've done everything I can do there. I'm chuffed that I've been made to feel so welcome by the community.

"I'm glad that I've been healthy and fit enough to this deliver on time - as postmen always do."

There will be a Nast Hyde Halt open day taking place between 9am and 7pm on Saturday, June 22, to raise funds for the nearby children's play area.

Nast Hyde Hall open day - June 22. Picture: Mike IzzardNast Hyde Hall open day - June 22. Picture: Mike Izzard

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